Serial Position Effect

We better remember the first and last items in a list

Whether it’s the visual order of products online, or a list of features heard in an advert, what sits at the ends will always stick more in the mind.

Ert & Fleischer (2016). Mere position effect in booking hotels online. Journal of Travel Research, 55(3), 311-321.

The study

Setup

468 people were randomly assigned to one of ten groups and shown a website list of ten hotels, each with the hotels in a different order. They were then asked to choose one.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Results

Regardless of their group, more people chose hotels placed at the start and end of the list.

np_read_2490885_000000

In detail

Key Takeaways

Position matters.

Why? Initial options are prioritized in our memory (Primacy effect). Then, we see a pattern, switch off in the middle and only at the end do latter options held in short term memory (Recency Effect) influence the decisions we make, so put your best stuff at each end.

End on a high.

Advertisers promoting benefits of their product should combine recency with the Peak-End Rule, finishing with a significant or unique feature to enhance recall, conversion and seal the deal with a positive Surprise.

Order = opportunity.

For ecommerce or aggregation sites, consider monetizing product positioning for the start and (paradoxically) end of your lists. Alternatively, design for and highlight conversion fairness with random ordering.

Serial Position Effect

We better remember the first and last items in a list

Whether it’s the visual order of products online, or a list of features heard in an advert, what sits at the ends will always stick more in the mind.

Ert & Fleischer (2016). Mere position effect in booking hotels online. Journal of Travel Research, 55(3), 311-321.

The study

Setup

468 people were randomly assigned to one of ten groups and shown a website list of ten hotels, each with the hotels in a different order. They were then asked to choose one.

Results

Regardless of their group, more people chose hotels placed at the start and end of the list.

Key Takeaways

Position matters.

Why? Initial options are prioritized in our memory (Primacy effect). Then, we see a pattern, switch off in the middle and only at the end do latter options held in short term memory (Recency Effect) influence the decisions we make, so put your best stuff at each end.

End on a high.

Advertisers promoting benefits of their product should combine recency with the Peak-End Rule, finishing with a significant or unique feature to enhance recall, conversion and seal the deal with a positive Surprise.

Order = opportunity.

For ecommerce or aggregation sites, consider monetizing product positioning for the start and (paradoxically) end of your lists. Alternatively, design for and highlight conversion fairness with random ordering.

Serial Position Effect

We better remember the first and last items in a list

Whether it’s the visual order of products online, or a list of features heard in an advert, what sits at the ends will always stick more in the mind.

The study

Setup

468 people were randomly assigned to one of ten groups and shown a website list of ten hotels, each with the hotels in a different order. They were then asked to choose one.

Results

Regardless of their group, more people chose hotels placed at the start and end of the list.

np_read_2490885_000000

In detail

Pairings

Conversion

Boost list recall through contrast

In a given list of features, options or ideas, we tend to better recall the first and last. Make the most of this by creating visual distinction.

Where can you start with a bang...and end on one too?

Connected to

Running workshops?

Serial Position Effect

is included in Box One of our physical workshop tool.
is included in Box Two of our physical workshop tool.
Box Two